Builder WorkBench the construction management software “designed by builders for builders” will be exhibiting at the NAHB International Builders Show in Orlando Florida, booth number W5151. The show will be at the Orange County Convention Center, 9800 International Drive, on February 8 to 11, 2012. Show hours will be 8:30 am-5:00 pm on February 8 to 10 and 8:30 am-2:00 pm on February 11.
The NAHB International Builders' Show (IBS) is the largest annual light construction show in the world, attracting 50,000 attendees from over 100 countries. It features the industry’s most important exhibitors from around the world and showcases the latest building products and technologies.
Builder WorkBench, will be officially launched at the show, and will offer Builders and Remodelers a total construction management suite. Any builder will now be able to track a job with total control from initial client contact to the completion of the last warranty item. Functionality including; contact management, proposal writing, job specifications, selections, change orders and warranty/service follow-up will enable a seamless progression of the job from start to finish. An executive portal provides a complete overview of project operations on one screen. Client and Subcontractor login areas provide secure locations for information transfer and communications. Builders can choose just how much and what kind of data is to be made available to each. Document and photo management on Builder WorkBench’s “cloud” infrastructure supplies an abundant amount of secure and redundant storage for all electronic files.
New products are the #1 reason people come to the NAHB International Builders Show and over 90% of visitors in 2011 said they found new products to use. In these times, builders are looking for ways to become drastically more efficient and profitable while maintaining control of their operations and products. Clearly, efficient construction management has never been more important. Builder WorkBench provides all the tools and technologies necessary for success in this environment. Builder WorkBench brings the small to mid-sized builder into the twenty first century.
See you at the show!
After 16 months of design and planning, the Builder WorkBench construction management software is being released for BETA testing. The origins of the new product date back to 2008. Shannon Cross, president of Builder WorkBench LLC and owner of a new home contracting and development company in Northeast Pennsylvania believed a program that was more user friendly and more in line with industry practices was needed. Cross’s prior experience in Fortune 500 software design and development as well as his experience utilizing various homebuilder software applications on the market led to the decision to design a new system from the ground up. The result is a system that can manage a typical job from initial client contact to final punch list and warranty interactions. Builder WorkBench provides a small to mid-sized Builder/Remodeler a comprehensive web based software solution to better manage the daily operations of their business at a very affordable price.
Just a few of the business benefits offered by the Builder WorkBench system include; giving your business a competitive edge, converting more sales through a highly professional appearance, minimizing construction and procurement errors and saving money, eliminating a need to internally manage complicated hardware or software, decreasing job production times and doing more with fewer employees.
The Version 1 release has ten major areas of importance: Buyer/Client Login, Subcontractor Login, Portal Page, Proposals, Scheduling, Selections, Change Orders, Ordering Specifications, Documents and Photo Management, Warranty and Service. Each area is listed below with its key features.
- Access to scheduled tasks (only those allowed by contractor)
- View and approve selections and change orders
- View job related documents such as contracts and plans
- View job progress photos and share photos with friends and family
- Set alerting and communication preferences
- Submit and view the status of warranty claimsSubcontractor Login
- Subcontractor access to critical job information
- View work schedule dates, documents, plans, and directions
- Access to assigned warranty claims
- Post a message and automatically send alert to buyer
- Browse latest photos for jobs
- Job cost summary
- List of upcoming schedule tasks
- Notification of upcoming change orders and selections due
- Track home buyer contact information
- Manage contract specifications, allowances, and options
- Attach home plans, kitchen plans, or any other plans to Proposal
- Attach documents such as draft contracts or appendices to Proposal
- Finalize and email Proposal directly to prospective Buyers for their review
- Print proposal details including price quote, specifications, plans, and documents
- Web based scheduling management
- Choose from Calendar view, List view or Gantt View
- Build job “critical path” through job predecessor links
- Track personal ToDos such as “Order Windows” on job schedule
- Assign tasks to Subcontractors and auto notify subs of scheduling
- Update entire schedule by simply dragging and dropping a task on calendar or Gantt view
- Review jobs included specifications and selections in one list
- Approve selections online
- Allow buyers to add custom choices
- Set selection deadlines
- Add selection related attachments
- Auto generate Change Orders for approved allowance overages
- Write and track Change Orders
- Automatically alert buyers of new Change Orders
- Approve Change Orders online
- Auto update “final” Ordering Specifications from approved Change Orders
- Concise list showing ‘final’ procuring or work order specifications
- View original contract specifications
- View buyer’s approved selections
- Stay abreast of open Change Orders
Documents and Photos
- Store/share documents and photos with clients and subs
- Upload multiple files and documents at one time
- Crop, resize, and rotate images prior to upload
- Share photos to friends or family members
Warranty and Service
- Centrally manage all warranty claims and punch list items
- Allow buyers to enter warranty claims
- Stay abreast of warranty claims status
- Assign warranty repair scheduling to subcontractors
Builder WorkBench BETA testing will continue through early 2012.
The final pieces are coming together for Version 1 of Builder WorkBench construction management software and the advantages for using applications like this are readily apparent when compared to conventional construction office practice. Typically contact information is kept in a separate data base, proposals, specifications and change orders are developed and initiated independently and selections; which are another issue by themselves, often are separate documents from the others which typically do not link together with each other. This results in lost time, profits, unhappy clients, and unhappy bosses.
Builder WorkBench combines all this information into one seamless software application and makes it available to the CEOs, owners, project managers, job supervisors, office personal, and clients on a single easy to use system. Permissions can be assigned to each individual for security reasons and job scheduling including warranty tracking ties the total job together from initial contact to final warranty claims.
Shannon Cross, president and designer of Builder WorkBench believes that companies can see vast improvements in six major areas of their operations.
Increased Job Revenue
- Builder WorkBench provides comprehensive job control and information dissemination. Scheduling tracks all phases of construction minimizing rework, which helps ensure the on time and under budget completion of jobs.
- Selection ‘sheets’ help prevent incorrect ordering of material by providing all client selection information in one location.
- Automatic generation of Change Orders from approved selections minimizes missed and inaccurate changes.
- Streamlining the total production management process is facilitated by multiple easy to use tools such as Drag and Drop Scheduling, Critical Path Gantt Charting, and To-Do List tracking.
- Tracking Change Orders in Builder WorkBench allows for more quick client approval and seamless automatic updating of Selections with the approved changes.
- ‘Single Screen’ Subcontractor Login ensures subs have information when they need it, allowing them to focus on production
Improved Customer Satisfaction
- Contract Specifications are seamlessly integrated with Selections, providing all information for job supervisors and clients at one convenient location, virtually eliminating the “What is included?” questions and disputes.
- Complete access and transfer of information through capabilities such as Document and Photo sharing provides better management of the client’s expectations minimizing disputes and maintaining client confidence.
- Punch list and Warranty tracking wrap up the entire job lifecycle, helping ensure timely follow up and completion of punch list and warranty work.
- Builder WorkBench helps provide great first impressions for your company. Highly professional Proposals provide sophisticated presentations that include pricing, cover letter, specifications, as well as other attachments.
- The private password protected Client Login portal provides a secure location for your clients to access Scheduling, Selections, Change Orders, Documents, Photos, and Warranty information.
- Offer your Clients access to advanced technology and capabilities historically reserved for ‘Big’ builders and remodelers.
- Builder WorkBench is a “Software As A Service” (SAAS) application which is completely web based. Information can be easily accessed from anywhere in the world 24/7.
- Builder WorkBench ensures timely delivery of information through a comprehensive configurable alerting system delivered via instant SMS text messages or daily summary Emails.
- The exclusive Message Board delivers a Messaging Wall and News Feed so the Client and Builder can seamlessly communicate.
Utilization of Sophisticated Technology
- Builder WorkBench’s state-of-the-art Cloud hosting technology offers highly redundant infrastructure and Enterprise SAN Data Storage monitored 24/7 by a full time security team.
- Builder WorkBench is built on the latest software technology including the Microsoft ASP. Net 4.0 platform and leverages Web 2.0 capabilities, incorporating ’Google like’ AJAX page loading, which increases application speed.
- Builder WorkBench requires no hardware purchase or complicated maintenance. It can be accessed from various devices including PC’s, laptops, pads, and other mobile devices.
Builder WorkBench will begin BETA testing in late 2011.